In what will come as welcome news to the thousands that use the road on a regular basis, repairs on the extremely poor section of the Agia-Medhipara-Phulbari-Tura (AMPT) road between Chibinang and Phulbari has not only progressed but has done so quickly, with more than half of the 10 kilometres due for rehabilitation already blacktopped.
The road had earlier been an absolute nightmare for people as massive potholes adorned the entire stretch. Added to that was the fact that the road had been at the mercy of nature, with the Brahmaputra River taking out chunks every year after floods. While there may be little that can be done to halt flooding, locals believe that the current repairs could at least last for some time and provide them relief.
Repair on the 10km stretch began late last year and gained pace as the Covid-19 pandemic situation stabilized.
The repairs are expected to reduce travel time between Chibinang to Tura by at least 40 minutes as the section, despite being only about 10km required as much time to cross, even for expert drivers.
Locals have expressed extreme happiness on the progress being made and now just want to see the entire stretch completed quickly.
“It has been a nightmare to use this road to go for emergencies. While the road was still manageable from Chibinang to Agia, our hearts would ache when we were about to reach our houses in Phulbari. Thankfully, in a few months the heartache will be gone,” said one A Islam from Phulbari.
Meanwhile, talking on the progress of the road repairs, Phulbari MLA, SG Esmatur Mominin, said, “We are happy with the progress of the road and the work being done is of good quality. I have been fighting to get sanction for repairing our section for the past two and a half years and am happy with our Chief Minister, Conrad Sangma, for helping out.”
The MLA added that he expected the current renovation of the road to be completed in another two months.
Meanwhile there is better news for the people of the plains belt as sources within the government informed that the section between Sign Board (0 KM) to Nidanpur (32), which is also in a dilapidated condition, has already been allotted and work is expected to start in February. The project will be funded by the World Bank and is the first phase of a plan to bring better infrastructure to Garo Hills.